Sunday, July 31, 2016

Now and Then: Prairie Ridge School Near Ely, Iowa

Between Cedar Rapids and Ely, Iowa fields of corn and soybeans stretch for miles. At a particular farm property on Spanish Road the remains of Prairie Ridge School, a one room schoolhouse still stands. The building was relocated on the farm and may have been originally located just yards from its present location. The top photo is courtesy of the website which I found via a detail rich schoolhouse website.

Compare this photo taken today to the 1910 photo above. Visible in both are the boys and girls separate entrances, the lattice work, the double windows and much of the original shape. The school bell tower has collapsed. Note the newer foundation on limestone.

A view inside the school room looking towards the boys and girls entrance. The floor is covered in debris and the walls are stripped of anything that would indicate that this was a school room.

A view to the left of the previous photo.

A view of the left hand entrance lattice work. I don't know the style of the school house in architectural terms but its' simple design includes a few accents like these vertical bars.

Another view of that same entrance. I don't know if that saw-like metal is associated with the school or part of the general out buildings in the immediate area.

How many times was this door opened and closed during the school's active years? This hardware is located on the left hand side entrance.

A view looking through four window frames on one side of the building to reveal the other set of four windows. These frames form the word, "HI."

The final photo is a look from the back of the building from the 1910 photo. The windows on the right are the one's featured in the previous photo. Looks like at one point a hanging door was added (not there anymore) on a roller hinge as well as a garage door. New home owners are moving into the farmhouse property. Perhaps they will have some restoration plans for the 100 year old plus Prairie Ridge School.

Monday, July 25, 2016

T-6 Walk Arounds at DBQ Before Leaving for OSH16

Some scenes from the Dubuque Regional Airport which hosted the NATA for T-6 aircraft before the Airventure 2016 show in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

T-6s are everywhere and from everywhere. In all 28 of them flew in formation to OSH16 on Sunday.

Stitch jumps off his T-6 as he prepares for the early afternoon takeoff.

Time to move the oil around or whatever you kids call it these days.


Several T-6s were present at the airport. Many of them in military colors.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

A T-6 Formation Salute to Dubuque Regional Airport (DBQ)

A formation of 28 T-6s heading for AirVenture 2016 salutes the Dubuque Regional Airport where the WWII era trainers refined their group flying skills for two days. The formation is comprised of 28 T-6s plus one twin engine plane in the back. OSH16 runs through July 28 and is expected to draw over a million visitors. If you are in Oshkosh look for the North American T-6s.

Corsair Readies at Dubuque Regional Airport Prior to OSH16

This afternoon a World War II vintage Corsair sat at the Dubuque Regional Airport prior to traveling to Oshkosh for the EAA Airventure 2016 event. For the past 11 years WWII planes have staged at Dubuque while waiting for landing slots at the Wisconsin event. More the a million people are expected to attend OSH16. If you can't make it to OSH be sure to visit DBQ a day or two ahead of Airventure next year to see a segment of the flying entertainment.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Feathery Tempation Eyes

A peacock's vivid plumage is pure art. This particular display comes courtesy from the University of Iowa's Hall of Birds located at Macbride Hall, which is part of oldest existing university museums west of the Mississippi. Be sure to visit Bird Hall, Mammal Hall and the Natural History Museum all within that building. Many students are not aware of the museums let alone visit the displays.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Toys From the Attic: Union Pacific in a Box and Magic Mike II the Robot

Somebody's childhood is contained in this box...and its for sale. I didn't see the asking price for the box of last century Union Pacific train set but it may not of been too much due to the condition of many of the rail cars. Its always interesting what people want to sell and buy.

Magic Mike II the robot from 2002 (but really made in Hong Kong in 1984) was also for sale at the same booth. Mike's asking price was only $8.00 but had it been a toy robot from the 1950s or 60s you might have to part with a few hundred dollars if you want it for your collection. Fortunately I don't need a coal burning train or a robot...or do I?

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Living in a Material World

A recent wave from an Union Pacific engineer is reminiscent of the album cover from 1973's Living in a Material World by George Harrison. While not exactly the same hand with Hindu script the gesture acknowledges that he sees me and I see him - from the safety of an overhead bridge. The fast moving train is probably doing about 60 mph at this point as it travels east through eastern Iowa.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Flags of Independence Day 2016 Mount Vernon Iowa

A rare 38 star US Flag appeared at the annual Mount Vernon, Iowa antique fair on Independence Day. The sign next to the flag reports it to be from 1875 when US Grant was the President. The flag's asking price was $475.

A replica of the Bennington flag served as the US Bicentennial flag in 1976. This one was available for $45.